Building a Trial Notebook the Paralegal Way

Report
Building a Trial Notebook
the Paralegal Way
Dana Ducote
Montye Holmes, CP
Hirsch & Westheimer, P.C.
1415 Louisiana, 36th FL
Houston, TX 77002
TYPE 1:
TRIAL NOTEBOOK FROM INCEPTION OF CASE
(CHRONOLOGICAL)
Live
pleadings (petitions and answers)
Docket control sheet
Disclosure responses
Discovery responses
Deposition summaries
List of key documents
TYPE 2:
TRUE TRIAL NOTEBOOK
Attorney
Voir
Trial Outlines
Dire Questions
Jury Seating Chart
Opening Statement
Closing Statement
Jury Charge
 Plaintiff’s
Pre-Trial Documents
Plaintiff’s
Exhibit List
Plaintiff’s Witness List
Plaintiff’s Motion in Limine
Plaintiff’s Proposed Jury Charge
Plaintiff’s Designation of Deposition
Excerpts
Plaintiff’s Designation of Expert
Witnesses
 Defendant’s
Pre-Trial Documents
Defendant’s
Exhibit List
Defendant’s Witness List
Defendant’s Motion in Limine
Defendant’s Proposed Jury Charge
Defendant’s Designation of
Deposition Excerpts
Defendant’s Designation of Expert
Witnesses
Pleadings
and Orders
Live
pleadings (petition and
answer)
Docket
Control Order
Court’s Trial Preparation Order
Plaintiff’s
Discovery Responses
Disclosure responses
Interrogatory answers
Production responses
Admissions
Defendant’s Discovery Responses
(Same)
 Plaintiff’s
Answers to Defendant’s First Set
of Interrogatories
 Plaintiff’s
Answers to Defendant’s Second
Set of Interrogatories
 Plaintiff’s
Responses to First Request for
Admissions
 Plaintiff’s
Responses to Second Request for
Admissions
Evidence
Exhibit
list/Exhibits
Witness list/Witnesses
Potential
questions for each witness
Deposition transcripts/summaries/excerpts
Closing
Argument
Jury Charge
TYPE 3:
LARGER CASES OR CASES WITH MULTIPLE
PARTIES MIGHT NEED SEPARATE NOTEBOOKS
FOR PLEADINGS, DISCOVERY, EXHIBITS, TRIAL
OUTLINES/JURY
Extensive
cases
Plaintiff’s
notebook
Defendant’s notebook
Separate
Pre-trial
“trial notebook”
Order
Docket Control Order
Witness lists
Exhibit lists
Jury section
Multiple
parties might have a
separate live pleadings notebook
Plaintiff’s
petition
Plaintiff’s answer to counterclaim
Defendant 1’s answer
Defendant 2’s answer
Defendant 3’s answer and
counterclaim
Discovery
Plaintiff’s
Responses Notebook
disclosure responses
Plaintiff’s answers to interrogatories
Plaintiff’s responses to requests for
production
Plaintiff’s responses to requests for
admissions
Separate section for each
defendant’s discovery responses
Deposition
Each
notebook
deposition taken (condensed
version, copied front and back)
Summary of the deposition with
issues identified when possible
Deposition excerpts
Exhibit
Your
notebook
own exhibit list with a copy of
each exhibit behind separate tabs
OR
Exhibits in file folders in a box
(marked with Exhibit number and
copied for each party, the witness,
the judge, and the court reporter)
Exhibit
list should have columns for
Exhibit number
Description of the exhibit
Bates number
Offered into evidence
Objection (if any)
Admitted
Other
sections that can be
included in both a litigation trial
notebook and a chronological trial
notebook:
Task
list/deadline chart
Contact list
Order of proof
Research/case law
Order
of Proof Outline
Witnesses
Issue
Exhibit
Jury
Section of Trial Notebook
Jury
Seating Chart
Jury
Section of Trial Notebook
Jury
Seating Chart
Voir Dire Questions
Jury Instructions
Jury Charge
Verdict Form
TYPE 4:
ELECTRONIC TRIAL NOTEBOOK
Electronic
Trial
Trial Notebook
software
Use your existing computer system
to gather your key documents in
one place, in addition to how they
were produced
Questions?

similar documents